The First Day of Christmas

There are just a few remaining minutes of December 25th where I am in the world, and as I was putting my kids to bed this evening––fresh from their fourth round of opening gifts with friends and family over the past 72-hours––they were bemoaning the fact that they would have to wait another 365 days for Christmas. And, in a lot of ways, they’re right. We look forward to Christmas for such a long time, especially with Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping, as well as the helpful expectancy found in Advent’s preparation, but Christmas comes and goes just as fast as any other 24-hour period. Which doesn’t seem fair. However, I’ve got some good news: today, December 25, is just the First Day of Christmas. No, I’m not going to break into song about my true love (who would have to produce 364 gifts over the 12-day period, which seems a bit over the top if you ask me). But, since there are 12 Days in the traditional Christmas time on the liturgical (fancy word for church) calendar, there’s still a lot of Christmas celebrating to do… so don’t take down the tree too quickly, or the lights you’ve hung on the roof. Keep the egg nog handy, and the cinnamon flavored candle burning. Sure, the stores around us will quickly begin announcing “after Christmas sales,” but they’ve got it all wrong: Christmas has just begun! Don’t stop the celebration. These are the darkest days of the year––literally, since the days are short and the nights are long––so look for light and good news and warmth in the story of Christmas that first showed up many, many years ago. And remember, it’s only the First Day of Christmas. The party goes on!